Rafael Nadal is optimistic he shall be match for the ATP Finals as he bids to seal the year-end world No.1 rating for the fifth time in his profession.
The 33-year-old Mallorcan took over on the summit from Novak Djokovic this week however suffered an belly damage on the Paris Masters the place he withdrew from his semi-final on Saturday.
Though he leads Djokovic by 640 factors heading into the London climax, he’s more likely to want a robust end at an occasion he’s but to win to forestall the Serb reclaiming the highest spot.
“I have to go daily,” Nadal advised reporters after arriving at London’s Thames-side O2 Enviornment by boat on Friday.
“I am pleased to be right here as a result of after final Saturday in Paris I did not know if I’d have the prospect to be right here.
“So I am excited to be right here after a few years with out with the ability to play. I have to see how issues evolve each single day. I’ve good hopes to be 100 per cent prepared for Monday.”
Nadal has been positioned within the Andre Agassi group alongside defending champion Alexander Zverev and debutants Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece and Russian Daniil Medvedev.
He’s scheduled to start on Monday night in opposition to Zverev however admits serving remains to be the largest fear.
“I began (serving) yesterday, very sluggish,” Nadal, who gained this 12 months’s French and US Opens to maneuver to 19 Grand Slam titles, one behind Roger Federer’s report, mentioned.
“I do know I’ve been taking part in nicely in Paris and for me the primary purpose is to be wholesome for Monday.
“I’ve been serving very nicely in Bercy, I had good matches, so I’m assured that I may be very aggressive however in fact it is a event that you’ll face the highest guys from the start so that you must be 100 per cent prepared.
“However I actually hope I can serve each single day a bit higher and my hope is to be on Sunday serving regular.”
Nadal has certified for the ATP Finals for the 15th time in his profession however has solely truly performed on eight events due to a career-long battle with numerous accidents.
His most up-to-date look was in 2017 when he performed solely one in every of his group matches, limping to defeat in opposition to David Goffin.
Even when Nadal withdrew or did not win a bunch match, Djokovic would nonetheless want to succeed in the ultimate to assert the year-end rating for a record-equalling sixth time — a feat solely American Pete Sampras has achieved.
Djokovic begins his quest for a sixth ATP Finals title on Sunday in opposition to Italian debutant Matteo Berretini.